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Dr Gary Cheung named the 2021 Alzheimers New Zealand Fellow Post Cover Image

Dr Cheung is a Senior Lecturer in Psychiatry at the University of Auckland and conducts research in the field of old age psychiatry. He has been instrumental in introducing cognitive stimulation therapy (CST), an evidence based non-pharmacological intervention for dementia, to New Zealand.

Dr Cheung co-leads the dissemination and research of CST with Dr Kathy Peri through Alzheimers New Zealand’s Dementia Learning Centre. He also researches how to adapt CST for Māori with Dr Makarena Dudley, who is New Zealand’s leading Māori dementia researcher.

The Alzheimers New Zealand Fellowship provides the recipient with $15,000 to support their research. Dr Cheung’s research will focus on analysing existing inteRAI clinical data to understand how the progression of cognitive impairment may be predicted.

“We brought CST to New Zealand in 2014 when the treatment was not routinely available here. Now, seven years later, a number of organisations are using it to help people living with dementia.”

“I am excited to continue my research. We have a lot of interesting data already in New Zealand through the Ministry of Health. By analysing these data we can see whether we can improve clinical practices and the quality of life for people living with dementia.”

“We will also work with colleagues in Canada on cross-country validation to see if we can use interRAI data to predict the progression of cogntiive impairemnt over time.”

“The research environment in New Zealand is very competitive so being awarded this Fellowship is a great opportunity. I am very thankful to Alzheimers New Zealand for supporting my research.”